Eddie Bernice Johnson violates rules, gives district 30 scholarships to relatives outside her district
The Sunday morning paper of the Dallas Morning News woke up Texans with a surprise (or to many, not a surprise), as another Democrat was caught showing favoritism and corruption. Relatives and family of Eddie Bernice Johnson, Dallas congresswoman, Texas District 30, and of her aides, have received thousands of dollars of scholarship from the Congressional Black Caucus in violation of anti-nepotism rules.
Eddie Bernice Johnson has awarded thousands of dollars in college scholarships to four relatives and a top aide's two children since 2005, using foundation funds set aside for black lawmakers' causes.
The congresswoman awarded this money to two of her grandchildren, two of her grand nephews and the children of her aide because, according to her, had there been more "very worthy applicants in my district" then "I probably wouldn’t have given it" to the relatives.
Er, Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, in all of TX-30, where you have been a congresswoman for 18 years, are there really no "very worthy" students to receive educational scholarships?
Perhaps it would be easier to find such "very worthy" students if the scholarships were publicized. Eddie Bernice Johnson's website never mentioned this scholarship opportunity for constituents to read about. According to the Congresswoman:
"This has been going on long before there was any websites. We send information to the high schools. I haven't known anybody who didn't know about it, to tell you the truth."
Maybe this helps explain why three or four awards granted each year went to family and relatives of Eddie Bernice Johnson and her aide, Rod Givens. They must have been able to find this information!
Perhaps to be "very worthy" of educational aid, one must live OUTSIDE of Texas CD-30 and be a child, grandson or great nephew of Congresswoman Johnson or Rod Givens. But aren't the scholarships supposed to be received by residents inside TX-30, the very district that the incumbent congresswoman currently represents?
Eddie Bernice Johnson's nepotism is an act of cynicism and a disrespect for the African American Community of Congressional District 30 and beyond that, an act of disrespect to all Americans!
From 2005-2008 Johnson awarded 11 scholarships a year and "each of those years, three or four winners were related to her or her district director, Rod Givens... Of 43 scholarships her office awarded between 2005 and 2008, 15 went to relatives of Johnson or Givens, according to foundation annual reports."
The congresswoman was chair of the Black Caucus Foundation in 2002 and served on the board through 2005, the same year that her grand nephews and grandson received their first scholarship. Not only are relatives not eligible, but the foundation rules also require that the recipients reside or go to school in a congressional district represented by a member of the Congressional Black Caucus.
According to the article, "None of the six lived or attended school in Johnson's district. They lived in districts represented by white Republicans." The congresswoman said "I haven't seen those rules." How could she have been the chair of the foundation in 2002 and not seen the rules? Johnson said “when you have enough money to give one additional scholarship and that person is well qualified, I have never considered it a violation of anything to give a little help.” Even if that little help is given by breaking rules, using money that does not belong to you, and also giving that to your relatives and friends who are not qualified since the rules explicitly say so?
According to the article,
Each one of the caucus members who participates in the foundation is responsible to publicize the competition locally in their district. Many of the US representatives publicize the opportunity on their US House website.
Er, Ms. Johnson, perhaps "this has been going on long before there was any websites" but could you please update your website so those qualified and deserving students and their parents in your district can find this important information? It could really make a difference for a bright, young deserving child in TX-30!
Let’s remember all this during early election voting October 18-29 and also on the November 2nd election day. Perhaps it's time to replace Eddie Bernice Johnson with someone who is honest, who follows the rules, who has integrity, cares about the future, and who cares for students in District 30 that are worthy of receiving a scholarship awards.
Eddie Bernice Johnson:
Is rated 100% by the NEA, indicating pro-public education votes.
Voted NO on vouchers for private & parochial schools.
Voted NO on allowing vouchers in DC schools.
Voted YES on environmental education grants for outdoor experiences.
Voted YES on $40B for green public schools.